It’s that time of year again, when the leaves are turning yellow, orange or red and when you find comfort in a warm bowl of stew.
Goulash originated in Hungary, of course, and many variations exist. It is also a popular autumn dish in northern Italy, like Trentino Alto Adige where this version uses cumin seeds instead of the usual caraway seeds.
Other popular dishes in that area include ravioli made with rye flour and filled with cabbage, spinach, or even sauerkraut and flavoured with marjoram, chives or caraway. I can’t wait to try the rye bread soup, which will be the subject of an upcoming post.
I enjoyed this version of goulash very much, so I hope you will too.
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
1/2 red, yellow or orange bell pepper
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 kg (2 pounds) stewing beef, cut into 2.5 cm (1 inch) cubes
1 cup dry red wine
1 litre (4 cups) low sodium beef broth
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 bay leaf
4 to 5 red potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
salt and pepper to taste
rye bread slices, for serving
1. In a heavy bottom pot such as a dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and bell pepper and cook until soft but not coloured, a few minutes. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute.
2. Add the meat to the pot along with a big pinch of salt and cook, stirring often, until brown, about 10 minutes.
3. Add the wine and reduce by half.
4. Add two cups of beef broth, the tomato paste and the bay leaf, cover, bring to a boil then reduce to simmer and cook, covered, for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, checking once in a while to make sure there is enough liquid.
5. Add the remaining broth, the potatoes, the cumin seeds, the paprika and the red pepper flakes and cook, partially covered, for another 30 to 45 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Correct seasonings.
6. Serve in a warm bowl, along with toasted rye bread.